Early in the global COVID-19 pandemic, Pope Francis was challenging us even then to imagine what the world could look like if we chose a new way forward for humanity, a way forward tempered by the suffering and loss that left no corner of our world untouched:
“Will we continue to look the other way with complicit silence in the face of those wars fueled by desires for dominance and power? … Are we willing to change the lifestyles that plunge so many into poverty, promoting and encouraging us to lead a more austere and humane life that enables an equitable distribution of resources? Will we adopt, as an international community, the necessary measures to stop the devastation of the environment or will we continue denying the evidence?”
Pope Francis challenged the Church to be shaken awake by the pandemic in a way that “wars or injustice across the world, nor … the cry of the poor or of our ailing planet” had been able to do. His hope was that this pandemic might leave us with “the necessary antibodies of justice, charity and solidarity.”
Pax Christi USA has been cultivating such “antibodies” for nearly 50 years now. We have risen to meet the challenges before us, both during the pandemic and as we re-emerge from the social distancing, isolation and grief of this past year.
Our work is vital and I am writing to you today to invite you to offer your support so that together we can continue to be the vanguard for the important work to which Pope Francis calls us.
You can click here to make a donation quickly, securely online right now. (Please choose “2021 Summer Appeal” from the drop-down menu next to the prompt, “Use my donation for”.)
You know the work that we do to witness to the peace of Christ in the world. You have seen first-hand how Pax Christi USA is making a difference in our Church and the world. Whether it is our engagement at the national level on issues of racial justice or our local groups’ efforts to promote nonviolence in their parishes and communities, we are putting into practice the Pope’s mandate to “build a civilization of love.”
I encourage you to read our synopsis of 2020 highlighting how we, as a Catholic movement for peace with justice, are:
- challenging white supremacy and stating unequivocally that Black Lives Matter;
- advocating for a world free of nuclear weapons;
- mainstreaming nonviolence in the theology and practice of the Catholic Church;
- and driving constructive change on everything from immigration to gun violence, the climate crisis to poverty.
It is your support that enables our movement to achieve the transformation we long to see.
In the first half of 2021 we’ve had:
- over 700 people participating in literary circles studying racial justice and nonviolence;
- over 4000 people utilizing our Lenten booklet for daily prayer throughout the season;
- more than 1300 people join our monthly virtual Peace Masses;
- 80 people trained in nonviolent action at our first online nonviolence training workshop;
- and tens of thousands more pray, study & act with us in response to the verdict in the Chauvin trial for the murder of George Floyd, the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, and so much more.
This is how we’re putting our antibodies of justice, charity and solidarity into action. We hope you’ll click here and make a contribution today to keep this work going.
Whether it is the growth of the Pax Christi Young Adult Caucus, our outreach over social media, our message reaching hundreds of thousands of new prospective members through features in mainstream and Catholic media, or the record number of people visiting our website — our movement is growing. And headed into our 50th anniversary year, we want to get a jump start on assuring that such growth continues for another 50 years.
We count on you to undertake this work with us, to be Pax Christi, the peace of Christ, wherever you are. And we count on you to believe in this movement in such a way that you want to invest in it, help it to grow and have the impact we need to create a world that is more just, more peaceful, more sustainable.
If you believe in this work and you have the means and can make a donation, I hope you will click here and do so today.
As your Bishop-President, I’m proud of what we have done and who we are. I hope you feel that same gratitude for being part of this extraordinary community. Together, I stand with you in your witness as the “peace of Christ” and I thank you for all you do to promote peace with justice in our world today.
In Christ’s peace,
Bishop John Stowe, OFM Conv.
Bishop-President, Pax Christi USA